THE logic of Dave Coull’s argument (Letters, April 22) – that if there is no timetable then people get fed up and wander off – can hardly be argued against. Patience only works if there’s a timetable. However, a timetable is only worthwhile if it’s realistic.

The major impediment to another independence referendum is the low probability that there will be an occupant of 10 Downing Street who would go for this. Cameron only agreed because he reckoned a No vote would be a walk in the park (kind of like a Remain vote for the EU!). Lord North is still notorious as the PM who lost America, and I cannot see a long queue to be the PM who lost Scotland.

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So, to those who would argue as Mr Coull, can I put it to you that if you want to argue this way – and I accept your logic – then you have to go on to suggest what comes next if Westminster says no. Mr Coull uses the analogy of the bus that doesn’t arrive, so if the Section 30 bus doesn’t come on time, which bus does he suggest we catch instead? Its all very well to argue the Scottish Parliament should draw up a timetable, but if not Section 30, what?

There are of course a whole range of options – UDI, using a General Election and majority of Westminster MPs from Scotland, a constitutional independence convention etc – but all of these have consequences and they need to be addressed in advance, not ex-post. Perhaps the worst thing would be to declare UDI and find the rest of the world says nothing more than “Oh that’s nice”, and continues in exactly the same way as before.

I understand Mr Coull’s frustration – I actually share it – but there needs to be a wide-ranging and systematic debate on the alternatives and how their consequences can be addressed and managed.

Alasdair Galloway

I HAVE not been a member of the SNP since the party decided, after a very good debate, to support Nato membership for the new Scotland.

I am, however, a SNP supporter in elections and in other ways, and I consider Nicola Sturgeon to be the most able politician in Europe.

I am impressed by Nicola’s record so far, but I think she is very close to making a major mistake over her attachment to the Growth Commission report.

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What is clear, I think, to most people in Scotland is that going into any future referendum on independence the Yes campaigners must be clear and positive about the currency we will use, once we have set up the required institutions. No ifs, or buts, or subject-to-tests will be acceptable – people will expect us to have a clear policy on this.

They will not expect great detail about the currency, but they will want clarity. Now we know from past experience that we cannot rely on Westminster politicians to be co-operative or even fair and reasonable, so we can only rely on what we can do ourselves if we want clarity, and that means our own currency as soon as practical after independence.

Also the very naive and somewhat childlike innocence of talking about negotiations with Westminster over financial issues, and announcing in advance what you want to offer, is ridiculous. We know now that the Westminster politicians are probably the most incompetent negotiators in the world, after the Brexit experience. Let’s not try and see if we can be even more stupid than them.

We can be frank and honest with our future trading partners in the rUK, as indeed we should be, but we should examine what is on the table before we decide what we are going to offer, if anything.

Nicola says this issue is for debate and discussion and that is fine, as long as the SNP leadership does not debate itself into an unwarranted boxed canyon, which leaves it open to Unionist attack of its own making.

I hope my faith in Nicola’s political acumen is correct and that she will wisely avoid some of the open traps which the Growth Commission have laid in her path.

Andy Anderson

A MYTH can be “a traditional story”, but also “a false belief or idea”. I described Peter Dryburgh’s advocacy (Letters, April 16) of an “internationally constituted body” with “full legal powers” to “examine the detailed connections between Scotland and England” as a myth.

Peter now claims such a body could be set up not by the United Nations, nor the EU, but by the Scottish Government, with widespread international involvement. He hasn’t answered my question about those “full legal powers”.

I still think this sounds like a myth which is unlikely to happen. But – suppose it did? Such a body could take a very long time to reach any conclusion. My estimate of “The Twelfth of Never” may not be far wrong.

We shouldn’t wait for this mythical time-wasting exercise. The time to set a target date for the new referendum on independence is NOW.

Dave Coull

WE get a lot of advice these days about how we conduct the independence campaign. Be patient, be moderate, do not antagonise previous no voters, don’t frighten people, be pragmatic.

But aren’t we forgetting one thing? Anger. Can we not be angry at the way our MPs are treated at Westminster? At how we were lied to about oil? About nuclear weapons sitting at Faslane when we strain to fund our health service? At the fact that some people own hundreds of thousands of acres of our land when young folk cannot afford a home? That we are being dragged out of the EU when we voted firmly to stay in? That Westminster simply ignores Scotland?

Yes, let’s be calm, pragmatic, moderate – Scottish. But let’s be angry too and make that part of our campaign. Our anger is justified, let’s express it and show it.

Alasdair MacDermott
Appin, Aryll